The short review would be “what a brilliant book”.
I had tinkered with Node.js before but in a bit of an unstructured fashion. Reading the table of contents had me impressed then seeing the price for the Kindle version confirmed the deal. There is a lot of information here for very little money, around £7.50.
We then move onto using Node for a command line app and then communicating over HTTP. With the slid foundations set the third section introduces some modules that will help us build actual websites.
The fourth section enhances the web apps ideas by introducing different databases, not just by name but by structure. Including MySQL and NoSQL such as MongoDB.
The final section shows how we can really use the code once use everywhere philosophy by allowing JS written for Node to also be executed in the browser. Then finally a chapter on testing to ensure our apps will behave as expected.
The book introduces the code in easy to understand segments and then often refactors this further into the chapter. This gave the examples a “real world” feel and helped show some best practices and why they should be used in that way.
There are also some nice interactions with other APIs such as the classic example of Twitter as well as Grooveshark.
If you are interested in getting started with Node.js or have just begun your learning and are seeking a more structured learning format I highly recommend Smashing Node.js.